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2017 Graduation Recognition Ceremony
May 13, 2017 : Southern Campus Graduate Recognition ceremony honors student accomplishment

Kevin Lunsford shakes hands with Dr. Pat McCoy
Army veteran and Outstanding Child Development graduate Kevin Lunsford shakes hands with Dr. Pat McCoy, senior lecturer of fine arts.

Stormi Vasvary is the first female graduate of the Ohio University Southern Associate Environmental Engineering Technology (EVT) program. Vasvary said, “Four generations of my family were present for the ceremony, which was something that hasn’t happened in our family before. I’m incredibly honored to be one of the first two Southern Campus graduates for the EVT program and even more proud to be the first female graduate from our program.”

Stormi Vasvary
Stormi Vasvary

Vasvary will begin work on a four-year degree in Environmental Occupational Safety in the fall and later she plans to pursue a master’s in civil engineering with a focus on environmental engineering
Courtland Bowman, another graduate of the Southern Campus EVT program said that participating in the ceremony made him want more. “I was really on the fence about pursing a Bachelor’s degree in EVT, but I have to say the experience made my mind up. I’m coming back in the fall to continue. I felt very accomplished that evening, but I realized I wasn’t finished.”
Keynote speaker was Ironton Mayor Katrina Keith, the city’s first female mayor. Keith is a 1996 graduate of Ohio University Southern. Keith told students that success is not how fast or how perfect one runs the race. Instead, she said, it’s making the most of mistakes and turning them into gold.
“Twenty years ago, I sat right where you are sitting anticipating my future,” Keith said. “I was not a traditional student. I always did everything different. I marched to the beat of my own drum. I made my fair share of bad decisions. However, I learned to face my fears head on.”
Keith continued, “The road to success if filled with challenges, obstacles and setbacks – the difference is how you handle them. Every challenge has a specific assignment. If handled properly it will sharpen you and prepare you for your destiny. I challenge you to embrace your obstacles.”
Bachelor of Science in Communication graduate Hannah Carey, who was recognized for being the Outstanding Graduate in her program, said that the event made her achievements feel real “When I walked across the stage wearing my cap and gown, it finally all felt real.” Carey will be continuing her academic career at Marshall University where she will pursue a career in speech language pathology.
Earlier in the afternoon, 17 members of the second BSN class to graduate from Ohio University Southern participated in the traditional pinning ceremony for new nurses.
Dr. Nicole Pennington, dean of Ohio University Southern said, “I want our new graduate nurses and audience to know that when you see a Southern Campus nurse taking care of your family members in local hospitals, you can breathe a sigh of relief because our nurses are the best of the best.”
If history is any indications, this is truly the case. The Southern Campus 2016 inaugural BSN class was comprised of 18 graduates with a first-time pass rate of 94.44%. The National Average for first-time testers nationally was 84.56%. Of those graduates 100% were employed within 6 months of graduation – most of whom work for facilities in the Tri-State region.
The Southern Campus, held the first campus graduate recognition ceremony in June of 1981.
Since then, more than 7,800 graduates have earned their degrees.